Dear Brothers and Sisters in Islam,
Assalamu Alaikum! Once again we are blessed with the holy month of Ramadan, Alhamdulillah. I would like to take this opportunity to remind myself and you all that we should multiply our good deeds and take full advantage of this blessed month, InshaAllah.
We must work at attaining taqwa, Allah consciousness, which is outlined by Allah (SWT) in the holy Quran as the sole objective of our fast. Let us try our best to be worthy of His mercy, forgiveness and salvation from the Hellfire.
We should be particularly mindful of our personal relationship with Allah (SWT), and work towards strengthening it in this month. Allah (SWT) has blessed us with numerous outlets by which to garner His reward. We can study the Qur’an during this month more than ever before, observe our fast in a commendable manner, perform Salatut Taraweeh and Qiyamul Lail (and if possible Itikaf during the last ten days), share our wealth with the less fortunate servants of Allah and donate to righteous and worthy causes.
Let us be more careful and caring while dealing with people (both Muslim and non Muslim), cleanse our hearts and tongues and perfect our daily dealings; as we all know, improving ourselves in these areas is critical to attaining Allah’s pleasure. Let us strive to make improvements in our daily lives during this blessed month. Identify at least one positive habit or good deed that has become part of our routine this Ramadan and make a pledge to continue performing it for the rest of the year. When our beloved Prophet (peace be up on him) was asked, “What deeds are most pleasing to Allah?” he replied, “The most regular constant deeds even though they may be few.” (Bukhari)
Ramadan is a month of both reflection and action. ICNA has launched two major campaigns this summer that require your support. I encourage you to get involved in the campaign Defending Religious Freedom, Understanding Sharia, a national educational initiative that aims to increase public understanding of Shariah and counter the rise of Islamophobia in America. The Understanding Shariah campaign comes at a time when our religious freedoms are at risk; as American Muslims we must stand up for the values of our nation.
The Back to School Giveaway campaign, set to kick off in the first week of Ramadan, will lend much needed support to struggling families. An estimated 15,000 children across the country will receive school bags filled with school supplies, easing the financial burden of thousands of families and ultimately providing all with better access to education. I encourage you to reap the benefits of Ramadan by supporting both of these causes, by donating at www.icna.org or volunteering with us at www.icna.org.
Last but not least, I invite you to celebrate the close of this blessed month with ICNA at Muslim Family Day, which will be held this year in ten cities nationwide. Visit www.muslimfamilyday.com for more information.
May Allah (SWT) bless us and our families with peace, tranquility, strong Iman, and healthy and active lives. May He give us the best of this world and the Hereafter. Ameen.
Your brother in Islam,
Zahid H. Bukhari
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